Whatever 2016 brought to your personally, it’s been a hard year for us collectively. Our communities, our gathering spaces, our health care, and our safety in public spaces are all under threat. We all want to reset the clock, clean the slate — we all want 2017 to be better. Some of us fear the worst for the coming year; others have guarded hope that we will be able to fight back, protect one another, and transform the culture of bigotry and white supremacy that’s is now gaining more power than ever. This column is about queer love: the ways we hold and inspire each other, drive each other wild with desire, partner and create family, that all push against the edges of what we were raised to be believe was possible. Queer spaces are magical worlds where we create new possibilities. Queer communities, at their best, offer care and intimacy outside the legal bonds of marriage or social bonds of couplehood. Part of what we realize as we find our people is that what affects them will affect us. This is what queer love means, and it’s essential to how we’ll be able to survive and grow even stronger and wilder and sexier and more irresistible in the coming year.
This month, we’re looking at your coming year in queer love: how you’ll be able to grow, where you’ll be able to heal, and where you can hold the faith and keep the dream alive. Here’s your roadmap to how to love yourself better this year, and show up for the ones you love — whether that’s your committed life partner or your an international network of queer communities. If you have some astro-savvy, read your Venus and Moon signs first, followed by your Sun and rising. The more signs you read, the more complete a picture you’ll get of your coming year.
As always, don’t worry about anything that doesn’t resonate. If you want a more specific look at your year ahead, holler for a reading. And if you’re feeling overwhelmed by the state of the world and wondering how you’re going to make it through this time, check out a free resource on Skills for Sensitives on January 12. I’ve also got a deal going for a shorter reading focused on staying strong in the struggle, for anyone involved in fighting against oppression and building resilient communities of resistance: Discounted Readings for Comrades. Good luck out there this month, sweeties. Hold each other tightly!
You may be typecast as an agent of chaos — or at least someone who makes decisions suddenly and pursues adventure and independence when others might prefer you stuck around with them. This year, you’re bringing necessary inspiration and wild ideas to your community. The wind is in your sails this year as a Grand Fire Trine activates and encourages all that is passionate, creative, romantic, and fiery in you. You’ve had Uranus — planet of revolution, inspiration, and queerness — in your sign for a few years now, and this year it’s a star player. Your ability to love what is strangest in yourself is at its height, and you can offer that acceptance and recognition to others effortlessly. Your have the power to scheme and create a better world, but the burden isn’t on your shoulders alone. Find your people (the ones who don’t shame you for your wildness or your direct communication) and share your visions. Just make sure to check your impatience, and your tendency to make decisions that affect others without discussion. The eclipses in February will recharge your romantic and creative impulses, which could prompt major changes in how you express yourself and who you want to be sharing yourself with. The eclipses in August will continue that theme, and propel you toward discovering how your own bright spark can light the fires of collective liberation.
Much of the fiery energy of this year will affect you in hidden ways. This is a year when the stable, consistent care and feeding you offer to all those you love will be charged with a deeper emotional resonance. The hardest thing about planets in Taurus (especially the Moon), is that they get comfortable with any situation that last long enough. This means you may put up with unfulfilling relationships, unhealthy homes, and all kinds of drama — stressors that wear away at your core resilience, joy, and creativity. This year will demand that you make some changes, because the psychic pressure of remaining in bad patterns will become to great. When you make these changes, your life will open up. If you stay present and engaged, this can be a year of magical connections: intuitive, life-changing bonds with sexual partners and cohorts in healing, spiritually transcendent love, and positive transformations in your home life. Resist the urge to grit your teeth and just get through it all: there will be challenges this year, but the more you let them teach you about yourself, the stronger you’ll be. February’s eclipses will focus your attention on needed changes in your home and family, while August’s eclipses continue that theme and ask you how you can show up as a trusted authority on what you know best.
Have you found your voice yet? This is a year of dramatic changes, fiery opportunities, and passions of all kinds. For you, you’ll be wanting to explore what it means to show up in your life as a clearer vessel for all the impulses and inspirations moving through you. Whether you’re feeling grief or love, you’ll want to be singing those feelings–even if you’re too shy to sing where anyone can hear you. Luckily, this year will bring people into your life who can hear your voice better than you can yourself — and will reflect back to you what they hear. Welcome feeling held and heard. Welcome stories, told and listened to. Be curious. Ask the hard questions, but gently. Let yourself learn what deeper love looks like in every single friendship you have, while your romantic connections teach you exactly the words you need. All of this year’s eclipses will activate your curiosity and intellectual pursuits; February’s will also increase your focus on your calling in life (what are you here to do, and how can you do it well?), while August’s will stimulate growth through higher learning or travel. In a year with so much mental activity, make sure you’re staying grounded in your body and connecting with quieter friends and silent animals and slow rivers.
The year begins with a Full Moon in your sign on the 12th. January is always a potent month for you to review and renew your emotional commitments. How have you handled disappointment and conflict this year? How gentle have you been to yourself when you feel sad or scared? How much does anxiety determine your behavior? This month helps you assess and heal. Take advantage of that medicine, as this is an especially good time to soften your heart and listen to your intuition. For the year ahead, the Grand Trine in Fire will highlight themes of freedom vs. family — how much support do you want, and are you getting it? How much autonomy do you need and can you ask for it? Is any relationship feeling too chaotic, or too smothering? This is a year when you can make great strides in understanding what helps your heart feel strong and your passions feel thrilling. Don’t be afraid to experiment and get messy, and remember the difference between healthy and toxic communication styles (the need to control is always a red flag). February’s eclipses will ask you to value yourself more deeply so that you can expand into a larger vision of your own capacity, while the August eclipses shift your attention more to the sexual realm of deep intimacy and inner transformation.
Welcome to your new life, darling. This is your year to shake the dust off your stilettos and take the world by storm. Of course you don’t feel ready. Don’t worry, you’ll find the strength you need by doing what you feel called toward — what inspires your deepest love. You may have to feel grief, fear, and rage on the way to feeling that deep love, but I promise you it’s worth it. Hold out for the big prize, the shiniest ambitions, and the truest sense of belonging. Don’t get bitter about things along the way that don’t right fit–just know you’re on a process of becoming that will polish you to a fine lustre this year. Let go of status. Let go of heartbreak (by moving through it). Let go of the cool kid crowd, whether you’re one of them or wishing you could be. Let go of the idea that there’s a right time and a right place that could nurture your genius anymore than right here and right now. The Grand Fire Trine lights up all your centers of self-discovery, self-expression, and adventure this year, and the eclipses in your sign (in February and August) spotlight the growth you’re ready to do. This will be a huge year for you, so make sure you’re staying grounded and hydrated and connected to the folks who keep you from burning out too fast! August’s lunar eclipse will be an especially charged time for your partnerships, so do the work before then to solve problems and assess what you’re willing to let go of and so you can welcome the love you’re ready for.
It’s best to approach 2017 without a plan. It’s impossible to know yet what currents will urge you in what unknown directions. This can relieve the stress of trying to over-determine the future, but it may make you anxious to confront all that you can’t predict and control in the coming year. Instead, take stock of what new relationships and desires have twined their way into your life since last year, and don’t be alarmed if older ones are transforming in unexpected ways. You’re on the other side of a major rebirth; you’re still learning the new terrain. But believe that you are ready for what comes next, even if you can’t know what it is. Many of the most delightful and important experiences of 2017 will come to you from unexpected sources. Your job is only to stay honest with yourself about what you want and love most deeply, and devote yourself to tending that beloved source of joy. One of the hardest skills you need to learn right now is to have faith — in yourself, in the world, in your lovers and friends — despite how easy it is to succumb to doubts and fears. Obviously, this doesn’t mean letting an abusive partner or manipulative friend deceive you — it means learning to wait and pause before deciding the worst-case scenario is coming true. The eclipses in February will highlight your unconscious beliefs about partnership, while the eclipses in August bring to light what you need to care for yourself.
This is an important year for all of your partnerships, romantic or otherwise. You’re growing into yourself as a new kind of creature — taking different risks, discovering new horizons, and generally gearing for big growth and exploration. Your loved ones will have to make room for your new needs, desires, and obligations. Don’t worry if this month still feels a little foggy — your ruling planet will be crossing paths with Neptune, planet of illusions and longing, in the first week and clashing with Saturn, planet of responsibility. If romantic troubles arise, or if you long for a different kind of love, don’t fall prey to grandiose fantasies. Check in about it later in the month to assess what’s real. Throughout the year, the Grand Fire Trine will activate the parts of your life where you have the most conscious power to choose the relationships you want, and make communicate clearly about how to negotiate, compromise, and even agree to disagree. Use that fiery energy to motivate you to get more clear on your real desires, and more creative about how you show up as your full self to all your closest relationships. For romantic partners, this can be an exciting and revitalizing time, for all intimacies it can help them grow in new directions. The eclipses in February and August will especially highlight your desire to be a part of a larger group working on an idealistic project; while the August eclipse also stimulates your need for romance and playful courtship.
Who are you trying to help in this world? What skills do you have for this goal? How can you improve on what you’re already good at? These are some of your core questions this year, especially when it comes to your core strengths and talents, whether or not you’re getting paid for them. Your relationships will thrive or fail this year depending on how they affect your sense of inner security: are your loved ones helping you feel that you’re valuable and important? Does your family respect your autonomy and path in life? Are your closest intimacies imbalanced, or are you able to support each other reciprocally? The Grand Fire Trine lights up your year like a neon sign, pointing out the ways that you need a stronger foundation, and asking you to take creative action about this. You’ll have tremendous energy for your longterm goals this year, especially around building abundant community and sharing resources with your crew. The eclipses in February stimulate your romantic self-expression, as well as your core sense of purpose, while the August eclipses continue the theme of purpose and also highlight your need for a strong home base.
The last few years have been transformational: big life lessons, big growth spurts, and big setbacks. As Saturn spends its last year in your sign (a little less than a year, even — it moves to Capricorn in December), the heavy pressures of adulthood and responsibility will be lightened by the Grand Fire Trine that is electrifying and animating planets in Sagittarius, Leo, and Aries. This is the year when your hard work is paying off. You’ve been learning about how to integrate freedom and responsibility — perhaps through a lot of painful trial and error. You’ve been learning how to recognize commitments that feel meaningful and worth sacrificing for. You’ve maybe felt a little more isolated, a little less splashy, a little less social. This year you’ll be venturing out more, but with a stronger sense of purpose than ever before. Where you love, you’ll want to be reliable. Where you’re inspired, you’ll want to create something real. You’ll have the chance to prove what you’ve learned this year, especially when it comes to taking your own magic seriously and being a trustworthy friend and partner to the folks you love. The eclipses in February will galvanize a renewed interest in joining the larger world, a theme that continues in August with an added dimension of understanding what home looks like for you now.
You can feel yourself leaning into a deeper commitment to your own life and everything that defines you. This year lights the fires of your imagination and passion. Watch out for a few fiery conflicts with your family and those you share deep intimacy with — as passions run high, patience might run thin. But overall you’re well positioned to open up to deeper levels of connection right now. Start with yourself, and whatever you love about yourself that hasn’t been getting enough attention. Did you used to play music and stop? Have you not going dancing in years? Just because times are tough doesn’t mean you have to stop creating beautiful memories — in fact, it means the opposite. We need joyous experiences to help us get through the hard times. Remember that we’re in it for the long haul, so whatever you’re most excited to bring about this year, be patient and steady as you build it. This goes extra hard for your relationships, which might transform dramatically this year — especially sexual ones. Welcome fresh ideas, deeper growth, and a resurgence of vitality into all the routines and familiar problems. The eclipses in February and August will have their strongest effect on your sexual relationships, so spend some time this year deepening into a truer sense of what is powerfully healing and important in your sexuality, and what traumas and blocks you’re ready to release.
Your ruling planet, Uranus, is the planet of queerness and the planet of collective liberation. Lucky you! This year, the Grand Fire Trine includes Uranus in a powerful, supportive alignment that will help sustain all your clearest, most idealistic projects for creating a better world. Even if you don’t identify as an activist, wherever you put your energies this year can help shift the consciousness of the groups you work with (colleagues, co-workers, students, teachers, club members, acquaintances, housemates, poly circles, etc.), helping everyone sign on to a larger vision of what’s possible. This influence also directly affects your partnerships — romantic and otherwise. What it means for you to commit to someone will be a big theme of the year, asking you to investigate what makes you assume you’re not safe in intimacy, what makes you pull away, and how to show up completely without losing your distinct identity. Depending on if you’re partnered right now, this could be a year when that you meet an important partner and have to face the challenges of weaving your life together with theirs, or it could be a year when your existing partnerships surprise and challenge you — or even a year when you do some internal work around not being in partnership and come to some clear decisions about the life you want. These themes will be especially strong for you in February and August, as eclipses in Leo highlight the choices you make about these longterm intimacies.
For you, this year begins under a romantic spell. With Venus and Mars, planets of relationship and sexuality, both in Pisces and both crossing paths with Neptune, your sign ruler, the first few weeks of January are especially potent for love and sex magic of all kinds. Take advantage of this golden opportunity — and make sure it doesn’t slide into self-destructive behavior (Neptune is a little like a club drug: it can stimulate an extra dreamy romantic connection, and also cause one hell of a hangover). Try not to put anyone else’s needs before your own, though, because this year is still testing your ability to hold onto yourself and trust your own voice and opinions and strengths. Love shouldn’t decenter you or morph you into someone you’re not. Let your path of growth and change proceed gradually with a strong sense of stability and groundedness this year. This might feel challenging with the Grand Fire Trine kicking up its heels and asking you to dance; don’t feel you have to sit out all the fun, but do know when you’re tired and need to say no. You don’t have to be everyone’s therapist, you don’t have to merge with everyone you love, you get to have a night off with no emotional obligations. This is especially important for you this year, when the eclipses in February and August highlight your relationship to being helpful for others, or taking care of yourself. February’s solar eclipse in your sign will also begin a six-month period of major change in your sense of self — you may be ready to step into a new version of your life, with new responsibilities and opportunities.